Welcome to the Lax All Stars 2021 PLL Rookie Spotlights series!
The PLL College Draft was held April 26, introducing 32 players into the PLL fold. The league’s training camp is set for May 28 through June 3 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts, to determine the final rosters of the eight teams for the 2021 campaign.
Not all 32 of these players will make a team, but right now, the dream is alive for them all. We’re counting down the days until the PLL opens up its training camp by delving deep into every player selected in the 2021 PLL College Draft, with two players included in each post, with help from Ryder Cochrane, Ryan Conwell, Nick Zoroya, and Nick Pietras.
Next up: Jamie Trimboli and Ryan Smith.
2021 PLL Rookie Spotlights: Jamie Trimboli & Ryan Smith
Who drafted him & when: Jamie Trimboli was selected No. 29 overall (Round 4, Pick 5) by Redwoods LC.
Is this about where he was expected to go: I wouldn’t have been terribly surprised if Jamie Trimboli made it to free agency. You can look at everyone who was drafted before him and understand why. Trimboli is a strictly offensive midfielder, which I think is what hindered his draft stock so much. With limited roster spots, it becomes difficult to justify drafting a player who can’t play defense.
What are the main skills he brings to the team: Jamie Trimboli is the definition of a marksman on the lacrosse field. He truly can put the ball anywhere he sees fit, even in the most unlikely of circumstances. It doesn’t matter if he is on the run or completely stationary; that ball is going where he wants it.
On top of this, he is one of the fastest midfielders in this draft class. Trimboli might not be the biggest guy on the field, but he makes up for it with his ability to move his feet faster than anyone else. This speed translates over to his hands as he is able to get his hands free at an alarming speed. If he has any sort of window to get his hands free to take a shot, he has the speed to do so. He can generate so much force on the ball without even needing his full range of motion on a shot. Trimboli can capitalize on even the smallest defensive error, which is terrifying to defenders.
How’s the fit: The fit is interesting, to say the least. The Redwoods midfield is already very offensively-focused, so the addition of Jamie Trimboli is puzzling. The Redwoods certainly would have benefited with the addition of a defensive midfielder, but I think they were surprised Trimboli was still on the board and took him based on his skillset alone. He might not be what Redwoods needed, but he does adds more depth to an aging midfield line.
Who’s the competition & what are the odds he makes the team: I’d say the odds are about 50/50 that he makes the team. Coming in at 5-foot-10, Jamie Trimboli would be on the shorter side for midfielders in the league. He may not be what the Redwoods need right now, which would inevitably be his biggest competition. I’ll be intrigued to see how his training camp goes. I feel like he could turn some heads and become a valuable asset for the ‘Woods if he’s playing at 100%.
School: Robert Morris
Who drafted him & when: Ryan Smith was selected No. 30 overall (Round 4, Pick 6) by Chaos LC.
Is this about where he was expected to go: Ryan Smith wasn’t really on anyone’s radar to be drafted regardless of his phenomenal performance this season. It was kind of a shock to hear his name called. The PLL is already such an attack-heavy league, it was surprising that he was selected coming from a school like Robert Morris. Don’t get me wrong, Robert Morris is a phenomenal program with a ton of skilled players. However, there are some concerns when drafting a player who didn’t come from a major conference as the level of competition is completely different at times.
What are the main skills he brings to the team: Ryan Smith very much resembles a Canadian Matt Rambo. Smith clocks in at 6-foot-2, 220 pounds and plays a very physical style of lacrosse. He physically brutes through his defenders with ease as he utilizes his size to the best of his ability. Coming from Ontario, Smith’s experience with box lacrosse plays a vital part in his style of play. With 48 goals and 23 assists during his fifth year, Smith can certainly play ball. He also is an animal on ground balls with 102 in his career as an attackman.
How’s the fit: This fit is awful, and there is no other way around it. The Chaos attack line currently consists of Chris Cloutier, Josh Byrne, Miles Thompson, Wes Berg, and Curtis Dickson. In no world did the Chaos need another attackman, let alone one with so many concerns about how well he will transition over to the league. I do not understand this pick for the life of me, not because Smith definitely won’t work in the PLL, but because he is not what the Chaos need in any way, shape, or form.
Who’s the competition & what are the odds he makes the team: The competition consists of everyone on the Chaos attack line. Smith is really going to have to show up if he wants a chance of making the team. As talented of a player he is, he is surrounded by serious talent that has always competed at a high level. Robert Morris is nothing to be ashamed of, but it’s not the Big Ten or the ACC. I love Smith as a player, but he’s going to have to show up in a big way during training camp if he wants to stay on Chaos.
More PLL Rookie Spotlights
There will be plenty of PLL Rookie Spotlights to check out between now and the start of training camp. You can find information about the incoming rookie class here.